Generally, it is possible to publish Open Access in two different types of journal. In the dedicated Open Access journals, and in many of the traditional journals which are typically accessed via a subscription.
Open Access journals are journals where all content is freely available to the public. In some Open Access journals, the author must pay a fee, a so-called APC (Article Processing Charge), to get an article published (Golden Open Access). There are, however, also journals in which it is free to publish Open Access (Diamond Open Access).
You can find a comprehensive overview of quality assured Open Access journals in the Directory of Open Access Journals (DOAJ).
Many traditional journals also allow Open Access publishing, either by letting the author pay an APC to have an article made freely available to the general public (Hybrid Open Access), or by allowing the author to self-archive/parallel publish an article. For example, by placing the accepted manuscript in a repository with a given embargo period (Green Open Access).
Green Open Access means that the author makes available (through self-archiving/parallel publishing) a specific full-text version (often the accepted manuscript) of his or her publication in an institutional or subject-specific repository, in addition to publishing elsewhere, for example, in a journal.
Depending on the copyright, the version placed in the Open Access repository could be a submitted manuscript, an accepted manuscript, or the final PDF version of the published publication.
Aarhus University recommends that all scientific publications produced by the University be made available to the public via Pure. AU Library can assist with the practical work involved with the Open Access availability (Open Access enrichment) of AU researchers' publications in Pure.
If you are interested in AU Library verifying whether or not it is possible for your accepted manuscript to be placed in Pure, you can submit your accepted manuscript via this form.
We recommend that you use this method rather than uploading accepted manuscripts to Pure yourself.
AU Library investigates and, where possible, ensures Open Access availability in Pure in accordance with the rights of the publisher, and with an indication of any embargo period. AU Library will put a coversheet on the publication with a link to the publisher's final version to ensure correct citation.
Golden Open Access means that a fee, a so-called APC (Article Processing Charge), is to be paid to the publisher to make an article freely available to the general public.
At Aarhus University, Golden Open Access is possible if it is financed by your department or through external funding from, for example, Danish foundations or the EU’s Horizon Europe. There are, however, also journals in which it is free to publish Open Access (Diamond Open Access).
An institutional repository is a digital archive, a repository for publications from a specific institution.
At Aarhus University, Pure is the institutional repository. When a publication is made available in Pure, there is free access to the publication for everyone, and it appears in the researcher's Pure profile that the publication is Open Access.
Self-archiving or parallel publication (Green Open Access) is when the researcher self-archives a version of their research publication in a repository, such as Pure, in parallel with their usual publication. In this way, the research publication can be made publicly available.
A submitted manuscript is the version of the publication that has not yet gone through the peer review process or been accepted for publication.
A submitted manuscript can also be called a; ’submitted version’, ’pre-print’, ’pre-refereed draft’.
Please note that some publishers use the term 'pre-print' when referring to the version of the publication that has been peer-reviewed, but before the publisher has produced the print copy of the publication.
An accepted manuscript is the version of the publication that has been peer reviewed and has undertaken the corrections that make it accepted by the publisher for publication, but before the publisher has made the layout of the publication.
The content is therefore the same as the published version, but the accepted manuscript can often differ in appearance, e.g. in the form of a Word document.
An accepted manuscript can also be referred to as an; ’author accepted manuscript’, ’post-print’, ’accepted draft’, ’accepted version’, ’author manuscript’.
The publisher version is the final version of the article, with the publisher's layout and typography.
The publisher version can also be known as; ’Version of Record’ (VoR), ’Final version’, ’Publisher’s PDF’, ’Published version’.
The following illustration shows the different versions of a publication in the publishing process
Many publishers and journals with an Open Access policy that allows for self-archiving/parallel publishing, have a requirement that the article should not be made freely available until after a given embargo period. The embargo periods vary depending on the publisher, journal and subject area. In addition, the embargo period may also depend on where the article itself is archived or shared, as well as the version of the article.
Find information about journals' standard Open Access policies, including any embargo period.
However, please note that there may be some journals that deviate from these standard policies.
Read more about how embargo periods are handled in relation to requirements from foundations and funders.
If your journal is not found in Sherpa/Romeo, you can go to the journal's website, or contact the journal directly to hear what their Open Access policy is.
You can find a comprehensive overview of dedicated peer reviewed Open Access journals in the Directory of Open Access Journals, i.e. journals where all content is freely available to the public.
You can find both Open Access journals where the author must pay a so-called APC (Article Processing Charge) to get an article published (Golden Open Access), and so-called Diamond Open Access Journals where it is free to publish.
At Aarhus University, Golden Open Access is possible if it is financed by your department or through external funding. The University does not have a central publishing fund.
If you publish with Golden Open Access, Aarhus University has discount agreements with these journals and publishers.
If you wish to publish in an Open Access journal, you should be aware that there are also questionable ('predatory') publishers and journals.
There is no precise definition of these publishers and journals, but one characteristic will often be that the publisher's peer review process is inadequate or non-existent (in spite of the publisher claiming the opposite) while the publisher collects a fee, a so-called APC (Article Processing Charge), to publish an article.
It can be difficult to assess the legitimacy of a publisher or journal. Journals indexed in DOAJ are generally trusted, but if you are in doubt, ask a colleague, ask at the library, or use this checklist.
Initially, Open Access has mainly focused on scientific journal articles, but there is an increasing focus on Open Access for books and book chapters. More and more publishing houses and publishing platforms offer Open Access publications of books and/or have an Open Access policy that allows for self-archiving/parallel publication, often of the accepted manuscripts of book chapters.
As an employee at Aarhus University, you also have the possibility of publishing your PhD dissertation, proceedings, working papers, etc., via our publication Platform - Open Monograph Press (OMP).
Open Access typically covers articles or books, but it also includes an increasing diversity of research outputs, such as data.
Data can be made Open Access accessible via data repositories,, such as figshare, Dryad, Dataverse, Zenodo and published in (data) journals that contain written documentation on how, why and when data has been collected. Data can also be published as preprints or in connection with traditional journals, where data is harvested on the journal's website.